Kona Coast Beaches


The Kona Coast is called Hawaii’s Gold Coast for a reason. Its riches lie in its abundant sunshine, fertile coffee farms, important historical sites, and exciting ocean activities.

Although the Kona Coast doesn’t have the gorgeous crescents of white sand that you will find on the Kohala Coast, it does have a diversity of beaches - ranging from the salt and pepper sands of Kahalu`u Beach Park to the powder-sugary white sands of the beaches at Kua Bay. Here are our favorites arranged from south to north.

Kahalu`u Beach Park is the most popular snorkeling spot on the Kona Coast. It’s nickname is turtle beach for the number of green sea turtles you will nearly bump into while in the water. This beach has full amenities including equipment rental. Parking is limited. Arrive early.

King Kamehameha Hotel Beach is a family-friendly beach located in the heart of Kailua Village and on the grounds of the King Kamehameha Beach Hotel. This beach has full amenities including equipment rental.

Kua Bay is the Kona Coast’s newest beach park and one of its yet undiscovered treasures. Formerly at the end of a rough 4-wheel trail, this beach is now reachable via a paved road. The ocean is usually calm during summer, however winter waves can be hazardous. The beach has full amenities. Bring your own shade.

Kikaua Point Beach is a secluded family-friendly beach located within the Kuki’o golf and Beach Resort. Nobody knows about this place, so keep it our little secret.  This small beach features soft white sand that gently slopes into the usually calm waters of a protected inlet.  The beach has full amenities. Bring your own shade.

Kuki`o Beach is a delightful crescent of sand located within the Four Seasons Resort. A natural breakwater creates a cove that allows for reasonably safe swimming and snorkeling. Green sea turtles (Honu) frequent this area. The beach has full amenities. Bring your own shade.


Surf, Sand, and Sun (map)

General Information

  1. Every beach on the Big Island is a public beach, even the ones at the posh resorts. Some hotels restrict access by charging for parking or limiting the number of parking spaces.

  1. We believe that morning is the best time to enjoy Kona Coast beaches. Early arrivers get to stake out the shadiest spot and enjoyed the uncrowded beach and ocean during the coolest part of the day.

  1. If you want to snorkel at Kahalu`u Beach Park it is best to arrive early.  The beach is very popular and the small parking lot fills up quickly.

  1. Petty theft is common in any resort area and The Big Island is no exception. Don’t leave anything in your car that you cannot afford to lose.

  1. Leave purses and wallets in your room or condo. Take with you to the beach only your driver’s license, a credit card (if you’ll need to pay for parking or want to rent recreational items at the beach, or stop for lunch before going home), and a small amount of cash for soft drinks or shave ice. Use a Dry-Pak to keep things securely with you in the water.

  1. If you must bring your cell phone, iPad, or Kindle, consider buying a Dry Bag to keep sand and water out of the electronics.

  1. Be Sun Safe

  2. T
    he tropical sun can be brutal. Even in the shade of a beach umbrella, reflected sunlight can burn unprotected skin. You wouldn’t want to spoil your vacation on the first day, so we advise that you wear waterproof sunblock (SPF 50 is appropriate for most beach activities) and reapply it at least once during your time at the beach. Be sure to sunscreen the tops of your feet and the tops of your ears.

Click on the links below to see detailed information about Big Island Beaches:

Kohala Coast Beaches

Kona Coast Beaches

  1. Kahalu`u Beach Park

  2. White Sands Beach

  3. King Kam Hotel Beach

  4. Kua Bay

  5. Kikaua Point Beach

  6. Kuki`o (4 Seasons) Beach

Windward Beaches

Beachgoer’s Checklist

Essentials to pack:

  1. Bulletbeach bag

  2. lightweight day-pack

  3. sunscreen

  4. Bullethat

  5. Bulletpolarized sunglasses

  6. Bulletsand mat

  7. Bulletbeach towel

  8. Bulletumbrella

  9. Bulletchair

  10. Bulletsnacks

  11. Bulletbook, Kindle or iPad

  12. Bulletunderwater camera

  13. Bulletsnorkeling gear

  14. Bulletzip-top plastic bags

  15. Bulletplenty of drinking water

  1. Suggestions

  2. If you have little ones or if you are not sure about the idea of snorkeling consider buying an inexpensive boggie board at Costco, Walmart, or Target that has a viewing hole in the board. You can float on it and look down onto the reef.

  1. Sunset

  2. No matter what vacationers are doing, life is usually placed on hold when the sun approaches the horizon. The beach along the Kona Coast are perfect places to sit and watch the sun sizzle into the Pacific. Click here to calculate the time the sun will set during your vacation.

  1. Whale Watching

  2. Humpback whales frequent Big Island waters between November and April. Since they are protected by law, there is only one way to legally get close to them, and that is on a dolphin or whale watching cruise.

King Kamehameha Hotel and Beach